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LONG BLOG

Improvements: This May Sting

   0
I'm not going to bother too much with an intro and just get straight into it. Yes, I will be repeating what a lot of others have said, but that will hopefully help it actually get changed. I'm going to start, however, with something that I haven't noticed anybody mention yet.

Screenshot/Image Galleries

This probably has more to do with all the junk and clutter at the top of each page, but I hate trying to look at new screenshots through Destructoid. Usually, when I notice an article about new screens from an upcoming game, I'll go over to another site to see if they have them. Why? First, they have it in a slideshow format. Therefore, I only have to load the one page instead of having to go to a separate page for each image. Then, if the picture is smaller, I can just expand it from there (you do do this on the Buy/Sell page, but the larger pics tend to go offscreen). Second, I don't have to scroll down half a page just to be able to see the full pic because of all the stuff at the top of the page that I never actually use. When I click on a link to view a picture, I'd like to be able to see the full picture, first thing, on the next page. That is, of course, assuming I can't just scroll to it in a slideshow.



Springboard

There are other "Improvement" blogs that can (and have) explained it much better, but I just want to add my voices to theirs. I will admit that Springboard has gotten a bit better in the last year or so (it doesn't randomly restart my video from the ad if I switch from full screen to normal anymore), but that's akin to saying, "Y'know, this shit doesn't smell quite as bad as it did yesterday." Can you please just stick with Youtube (preferably HD)?

Comments

A few things about comments. First, the ability to edit/delete our own comments would be great. I don't think I really need to explain that one. It's actually quite surprising that it hasn't been implemented sooner.

Second, threaded comments. Instead of having to start a new comment with @so_and_so, I can just hit the "Reply to comment" link and it will make a new comment under the comment I wish to reply to. It would be even better if these threaded comments could be expandable/collapsible. That way, if I'm reading through comments and I see one that I may want to read the replies to, I can just click on the little icon to show the replies/expand the thread. When I'm done, I can click the icon again to collapse that thread and go on with the rest of the comments. This would really clean up the comments section of each article and would allow readers to bypass (or more easily engage in, if they want) the arguments/squabbling and get straight to the comments that actually pertain to the article.

Finally, I don't need to be taken to a new page just to be told that my comment has been posted and shown the comment that was posted. I know what I wrote. Plus, what you show me in the green box does some weird shit with some of the punctuation, like placing a / in front of every apostrophe. I know the comment will be posted as written, but it's still a bit unnerving. Instead of taking me to a new page to tell me the obvious, how about you just reload the page to actually show my posted comment, or, at the very least, take me back to the top of the article/blog that I'm posting under.

Clutter

Oh lord, where to start? As has been said in just about every "Improvement" blog, you've got a whole helluva lot of crap on the page that can, quite frankly, be tossed. Let's start at the top.



For the love of God and all that's holy, get rid of that scrolling monstrosity of old stories. It was neat at first, but now it's just annoying and an eyesore. Not to mention that it pushes all the new stories further down the page. It's also gotten into this strange habit of scrolling uncontrollably from time to time. It needs to be retired.

I've just refreshed the front page and at the top is a link to a Flixist article as well as how many comments are one the article. Refreshing just brings up different articles from different sister sites. I completely understand wanting to promote you sister sites, but a simple link to the site itself should be plenty. And not at the top of the page where you should be focusing on yourself. You're already promoting those same sites at the bottom (which I'll talk about in a minute). Once is enough.

Then there are the ads. I understand that you get your money from selling ad space, but is it really necessary to have 2 ads for the same damn thing right next to each other. It's even worse when you have those two ads PLUS the back drop of the whole page. Worse still is when the 2 ads at the top and side of the page are both showing the trailer to the game at the same damn time (Space Marine is the most recent offender of doing this).

Then there's this thing:



If your mouse even accidentally rolls over that little arrow next to where it says "What's your game?" you get this monstrous pop-up box that nearly takes up the whole damn screen. This needs to be done away with. I understand that you're trying to make looking up popular titles a little faster, but that's what a search bar is for. Know where the search bar is? RIGHT NEXT TO THE DAMN ARROW!

The middle of the page I'm mostly okay with. There is a section on the right with links to a bunch of recently reviewed titles that I don't think is really needed seeing as there's already a link for Reviews at the top, but it's also not terrible.

Let's talk about the bottom of the page now.



Do you really need that many links to your sister sites. In my honest opinion, the links look a bit scammy. I think it would look cleaner and much more professional if you just had one row of links using the sites logo and name. If they have a tagline, then put it underneath the logo and have the link go their main page. Maybe preface the links with something like "Hey, if you like us, check our friend's sites at:" and then the links underneath.

Whew, that was a lot of stuff. I didn't even mention that stupid chat thing or how I sort of wish you would acknowledge the forum community a little more often, but I've only got so much time. I love Destructoid. It is, hands down my favorite website to go to every day. The community here is second to none and I've actually made several friends, both online and IRL, through the site. I know that some of my criticisms may be a bit harsh, but sometimes we have to hurt the ones we love in order to get through to them. I just hope that I and the others writing these blogs can get through to you.
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About djnealbone of us since 12:51 PM on 08.19.2009

Nerd. Dork. Geek. Singer. Gamer. DJ. Husband. I'm lots of things.

I've lived 100% of my life in Texas. That year and a half in Oklahoma don't count because, well, it was Oklahoma.

When I'm not working or spending time with the wife, then I'm gaming (unless it's one of those rare occasions that I actually spend some time practicing my djing). I love all types of games except sports games. I especially love RPGs and action games.

I currently do administrative work for a major university, but I hope to eventually get an MBA and work in the game industry on the business side of things.

Currently one of the cohosts on PStoid! Check us out.
Xbox LIVE:djnealb
PSN ID:djnealb
Steam ID:djnealb


 

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